Robotics

Agility Robotics showcases ‘Cassie’ as future of walking robots

Agility Robotics showcases ‘Cassie’ as future of walking robots

Oregon State University’s robotics program has been spun off its own company, Agility Robotics, and it aims to ‘revolutionize’ the future of robotics mobility. The new company is based out of both Oregon and Pennsylvania, and it says it already has ‘several’ customers in the pipeline. The company’s current crowning achievement is ‘Cassie,’ a bipedal robot that is able to walk around untethered on its own two legs.

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MIT gel robot is nearly invisible underwater, fast enough to grab fish

MIT gel robot is nearly invisible underwater, fast enough to grab fish

Researchers at MIT have created a new robot using hydrogel that, when placed underwater, is nearly invisible to the naked eye. Despite being made of transparent gel and powered by water, the robot is capable of reasonably fast movements, including grabbing a live fish, holding on to it, and then releasing it safely back into the water. Such a precise but gentle touch could one day have many applications, including surgical assistance.

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300 Intel drones light up Lady Gaga’s Super Bowl act

300 Intel drones light up Lady Gaga’s Super Bowl act

From smartphones to wearables to smart appliances, and now, to drones. That seems to be the journey that Intel has taken as it tries to gain some ground in markets outside its traditional PC silicon market. Although it's not exactly taking on more established drone makers like DJI head on, it is aiming for a more niche segment where it might actually stand uncontested for some time. And what better way to make a big splash than by launching 300 of those drones above the Super Bowl Halftime show.

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Bat Bot is the drone you probably want to but can’t fly

Bat Bot is the drone you probably want to but can’t fly

If you think that flying robots are still science fiction, that’s probably because you may have not realized that the popular quadcopter drones are, technically speaking, flying robots. If that doesn’t meet your criteria of a robot and would prefer something less industrial looking, then you might be interested in B2 instead. Short for “Bat Bot”, B2 is a robot that tries to mimic, and learn from, the flying capabilities of bats, resulting in a contraption that is both fascinating and yet creepy at the same time.

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Boston Dynamics’ Handle is a two-legged robot with wheels

Boston Dynamics’ Handle is a two-legged robot with wheels

Boston Dynamics is a name well-known in the Robotics field for its self-balancing, self-correcting robot “dogs” that don’t look anything like dogs. It is also well-known for robots that, in all honesty, look more like post-apocalyptic nightmares. While parent company X (of Alphabet) has cut loose its robot dogs, that doesn’t mean the company has given up on its dreams, as this leaked video so clearly shows. Meet Handle, a robotic nightmare on two legs and two wheels.

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Ocado tests gentle robot hands for picking and packing fruit

Ocado tests gentle robot hands for picking and packing fruit

The UK online grocery store Ocado is testing a new technology that may trim the number of human warehouse workers it needs: a robotic arm/hand that both picks and packs vegetables and fruit. The robot has been developed in partnership with Disney Research and a number of other institutions, and the end result is the testing of two different types of robotic hands, both designed to accommodate the random sizes of fruits of vegetables, and to handle them without damage.

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Raspberry Pi, Lego solve a Rubiks cube together

Raspberry Pi, Lego solve a Rubiks cube together

Back in the analog days, the geekiest expression of creativity and engineering have been Lego blocks. These days, it’s the Raspberry Pi. Of course, LEGO has caught up with the times and you can even mix the two together for best results. That’s exactly what a certain Francesco Georg has done, combining the flexibility of Lego’s free-form blocks with the brains of a Raspberry Pi. The result? A homemade robot that can solve a Rubiks cube in less than two minutes.

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Gita courier robot will “travel at human speeds with human agility”

Gita courier robot will “travel at human speeds with human agility”

The brand new company Piaggio Fast Forward have introduced their first product: Gita, an autonomous miniature vehicle for luggage. At least, that's what the folks at Piaggio Fast Forward suggest Gita is, a vehicle - but it might be easier to understand as a suitcase that's able to follow its user around an airport. This suitcase is also able to move autonomously in a mapped environment, avoiding obstacles as they appear.

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Panasonic’s HOSPI robot gets new jobs at hotel and airport

Panasonic’s HOSPI robot gets new jobs at hotel and airport

Panasonic is getting in on the current robot craze, revealing new real-world trials for its HOSPI Autonomous Delivery Robot that will kick off this month. Set to be loosed upon the corridors of the ANA Crowne Plaza Narita hotel, as well as Narita International Airport, the robot - which resembles an armless Dalek of sorts, albeit one with a friendly face rather than an appetite for murdering Time Lords - has already been adopted by a number of Japanese hospitals. Now, Panasonic is curious to see how it does outside of medical settings.

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ElliQ is an adorable robot that helps the elderly stay connected

ElliQ is an adorable robot that helps the elderly stay connected

The company Intuition Robotics has introduced a new home robotic device that helps the elderly stay connected with their friends and family, only without the confusing aspects of using a smartphone or tablet. The system is sort of like Amazon Echo, in that it speaks and can be spoken to. However, it works with a dedicated tablet device and also provides the owner’s family or caretakers with things they may need to know, such as whether the house is too hot or cold.

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Proposal seeks kill switch and mandatory registration for ‘smart’ robots

Proposal seeks kill switch and mandatory registration for ‘smart’ robots

The distant future once detailed and imagined in science fiction movies and books is now upon us, and humans are scrambling to stay ahead. Robots are no longer a foreign concept to the average consumer, and indeed you may even find versions of them, such as the Roomba, in the average home. Innovations in robotics will no doubt move quickly over the coming years, and will happen in step with advancements in artificial intelligence, painting a picture of a future where advanced robots can learn and think for themselves. To keep such advanced technologies in check, humans need a plan.

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LEGO Boost hands-on: simplifying brick robotics

LEGO Boost hands-on: simplifying brick robotics

It's almost never too early to begin learning about robotics - that's what LEGO seems to be telling us with LEGO Boost. The LEGO Boost system is a platform aimed at children 7-years and up. This is decidedly different from previous LEGO robotics sets offered in the past, like the LEGO Mindstorms EV3 which requires a bit more skill than most 7-year-olds are able to muster to make full use of.

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